Associate Professor

PhD, Public Policy, Princeton University, USA, 2011
BA, Economics, Gettysburg College, USA, 2002


Previously, I was a Quantitative Research Director at Includovate, an Assistant Professor in Economics at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at University College London, and an economist at the EBRD in London. Before grad school, I was an associate at Charles River Associates in Washington, DC, working on competition economics. I have published widely on gender economics, labor, social and economic development, entrepreneurship, political economy, economic history, comparative politics and democratization, and the politics and economics of development and transition. I have conducted policy work for a wide variety of organizations, including the EBRD, World Bank, IMF, Council of Europe Development Bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, AfDB, European Commission and the UN. My work has covered Eastern Europe, Asia, and Africa. I am fluent in English, Bulgarian, Russian and Italian, and have a working knowledge of French


Dubai Academic City, Remote



Teaching Areas

Gender economics, Political economy, Institutions and development, Economics and politics of development and transition, Economic history, Entrepreneurship

Research and Professional Activities

Adserà, Alícia, Francesca Dalla Pozza, Sergei Guriev, Lukas Kleine-Rueschkamp, and Elena Nikolova. "Height and well-being during the transition from plan to market." Economic Policy 36, no. 105 (2021): 77-120.

Barclay Child, Travers, and Elena Nikolova. "War and social attitudes." Conflict Management and Peace Science 37, no. 2 (2020): 152-171.

Djankov, Simeon, and Elena Nikolova. "Communism as the unhappy coming." Journal of Comparative Economics 46, no. 3 (2018): 708-721.

Nikolova, Elena, and Nikolay Marinov. "Do public fund windfalls increase corruption? Evidence from a natural disaster." Comparative Political Studies 50, no. 11 (2017): 1455-1488.

Nikolova, Elena. "Destined for democracy? Labour markets and political change in colonial British America." British Journal of Political Science 47, no. 1 (2017): 19-45.